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US Navy gets fourth Triton RPAS, achieving initial operational capability

Photo: Northrop Grumman

Northrop Grumman Corporation has successfully delivered the fourth MQ-4C Triton, an unmanned aircraft system, to the US Navy in advance of its anticipated initial operational capability (IOC) later this year.

The delivery finalizes the fleet of aircraft for the establishment of Unmanned Patrol Squadron (VUP) 19’s first operational orbit, and another orbit is getting ready for delivery later this summer.

With three orbits planned around the globe, the Triton multi-intelligence uncrewed aircraft will provide 24/7 maritime awareness, states the company.

In 2021, as part of their efforts to enhance operational capabilities in the maritime domain, the US Navy completed the first deployment of two MQ-4C Triton unmanned aircraft systems in Japan.

This deployment played a crucial role in the development of operational strategies, such as expeditionary basing and fleet learning, for high-altitude, long-endurance systems operations.

Designed specifically for the US Navy, the Triton aircraft is equipped to undertake various missions, encompassing maritime intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR) patrols, signals intelligence operations, search and rescue missions, and communication relays, said the company.

The aircraft boasts an endurance of over 24 hours, allowing it to remain airborne for extended periods. Additionally, it can operate at altitudes exceeding 10 miles and cover an operational range of 8,200 nautical miles.

To meet the Navy’s requirements, the program aims to deploy a total of 68 Triton aircraft, solidifying its position in the Navy’s fleet.